Posts Tagged ‘automaker’

Mazda hard at work on Skyactiv 2 engine technology

Published by Mazda Blogs on January 9th, 2014

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As Mazda continues the current rollout of its still-new Skyactiv technology, the automaker is already looking at improving its family of engines for even better fuel economy and emissions reductions. Automotive News reports that with stricter fuel economy and emissions regulations planned for 2020 and 2025 in Europe, Mazda will likely release engines with next-generation Skyactiv 2 technology by the end of this decade, and Skyactiv 3 units just five years later.

The latter is expected to focus on improved engine cooling and lessening energy losses, but the big news in AN’s report is that the next-gen Skyactiv 2 engines will use Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition, or HCCI. This type of ignition is very similar to how a diesel engine operates (with high compression and using the compression stroke for fuel combustion rather than spark plugs), a method said to provide a cleaner and more efficient fuel burn – to the tune of a 30-percent improvement in fuel economy compared to current Skyactiv engines. Other automakers, including Hyundai, have already announced they are developing HCCI powerplants with similar technology and characteristics, so Mazda likely won’t be a lone wolf here.

Equipped with HCCI technology, Mazda figures to be able to compete with larger automakers in terms of fuel economy and emissions without resorting to hybrid powertrains, continuously variable transmissions or automatics relying on more forward gears (eight or more) for optimal efficiency. Some of the challenges of HCCI, according to AN, include the need for better engine cooling, risk of misfire at high and low rpm and uneven engine performance based on fuel properties.

Mazda hard at work on Skyactiv 2 engine technology originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 08 Jan 2014 13:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2014 Mazda3 officially rated at 30/41 mpg, priced from $16,945*

Published by Mazda Blogs on July 24th, 2013

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2014 Mazda3 hatchback - front three-quarter view

It’s hard not to be smitten with the 2014 Mazda3; after all, just look at it. But beyond its slick lines, we found the new compact hatch to be a pretty remarkable steer, offering up good levels of comfort and refinement, not to mention functionality and engagement. Now, there’s more reason to like the 2014 Mazda3, as we’ve just learned that the car will officially be rated at 30 miles per gallon city and 41 mpg highway.

That 30/41 rating is for the Mazda3 sedan fitted with the 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G inline four-cylinder engine and a six-speed automatic transmission. Opting for the manual transmission retains the 41-mpg highway number, but drops the city digits to 29. Hatchback models with the 2.0-liter engine achieve 29/40 mpg with the manual ‘box and 30/40 with the automatic.

Mazda also offers a larger 2.5-liter inline-four in the 3, and while a six-speed automatic will be the only transmission available with this engine at launch, the automaker has confirmed that a manual is coming shortly. With the 6AT and 2.5, the Mazda3 sedan is rated at 28/39 mpg, or 29/40 with the company’s i-Eloop regenerative braking system. Hatchback models shrink those numbers to 28/37 and 29/39 mpg, with and without i-Eloop, respectively.

Along with official fuel economy numbers, Mazda has announced pricing for its new compact, and the base i SV model with a six-speed manual transmission will start at $16,945 (*not including $795 for destination).

Continue reading 2014 Mazda3 officially rated at 30/41 mpg, priced from $16,945*

2014 Mazda3 officially rated at 30/41 mpg, priced from $16,945* originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 24 Jul 2013 09:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Next Mazdaspeed3 could look this good

Published by Mazda Blogs on June 28th, 2013

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Mazdaspeed3 rendering

Mazda showed off its brand-new 2014 Mazda3 at an event in New York City earlier this week, and we have to say, at first blush, we’re pretty impressed. It looks fantastic – like a smaller, hatch’d version of the already sleek Mazda6 sedan that went on sale earlier this year. And with a 200-pound weight reduction, efficient Skyactiv gasoline engines underhood and Mazda’s usual focus on driving dynamics above all, we’re willing to bet that the new Three will be a pretty decent steer.

Of course, being enthusiasts, we’re already setting our sights on the next-generation Mazdaspeed3, rendered here by artist Theo Chin. To our eyes, it’s not a very imaginative transformation, but is likely a spot-on rendering for what the next car will look like. And it’s really, really hot.

While Mazda hasn’t exactly confirmed that the new Speed3 will be coming, sources within the automaker have indicated that a third-generation version of the MS3 is under development. Thing is, the Japanese automaker wants to give the standard Mazda3 some time to grow in the market, so we might not see the new Speed3 until something like 2016, with a possible diesel version to arrive before then.

The big unknown, however, is what will power the new Speed3. Of course, we’re big fans of the DISI 2.3-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder that’s currently used, producing 263 horsepower, but Mazda could certainly be developing something new. A turbo-four setup is a given, and power will likely fall closer to 275 hp for the new car. Bring it on.

Next Mazdaspeed3 could look this good originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 28 Jun 2013 13:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Live pics of 2014 Mazda3 from NYC, sedan on its way

Published by Mazda Blogs on June 26th, 2013

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2014 Mazda3

Here it is, ladies and gentlemen, straight from the memory cards of our own cameras. As you can see, the only version of the 2014 Mazda3 that the automaker is showing off at the moment is the hatchback, but we’ve gotten confirmation from Mazda that the sedan version will be shown sometime within the next five weeks.

So far, Mazda isn’t commenting on whether or not we can expect a higher-performance Mazdaspeed3 version of the car, but we’ve got our fingers crossed. In any case, we’re quite drawn to the appearance of this new hatchback from Mazda, with its flowing lines and character creases setting it apart from the rest of the compact segment in which it competes.

We also appreciate the sound engineering that went into the new 3. Despite boasting a wheelbase that’s longer than the car it replaces, we’re pleased to see that Mazda has kept its exterior size in check – it’s actually shorter overall than the last-gen model – while also reducing weight by about 200 pounds. That’s bound to be good for the new 3′s dynamic properties.

Have a good look at our live image gallery above, click here to read about the car’s new specs, and let us know what you think of Mazda’s latest compact hatchback in the Comments.

Live pics of 2014 Mazda3 from NYC, sedan on its way originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 26 Jun 2013 14:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Toyota, Honda, Mazda and Nissan recall 3.4 million vehicles for faulty airbags

Published by Mazda Blogs on April 11th, 2013

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Most vehicle recalls that take place these days are a result of some problem that happens during the manufacturing process by the automaker, but as we see here, parts suppliers can also factor in to problematic safety issues. Automotive News is reporting that a total of 3.4 million vehicles produced by Japanese automakers between 2000 and 2004 are being recalled globally due to faulty airbags produced by an outside supplier, Takata Corp.

According to the report, vehicles from Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Mazda are being recalled because of passenger front airbags that do not inflate properly. Globally, Toyota is said to be recalling around 1.73 million cars including 510,000 in the US composed of Toyota Corolla, Matrix, Sequoia and Tundra as well as the Lexus SC430 for the 2001 through 2003 model years; this is the second time this year the 2003 Corolla and Matrix have been recalled for an airbag problem. Honda is recalling 1.14 million models, Nissan another 480,000 and Mazda 45,463. The article says that Takata supplied faulty airbags to non-Japanese automakers, but it did not specify which ones.

Honda and Toyota have released information on their own websites about the recall, while Nissan and Mazda have not yet commented. Read official press releases from Honda and Toyota, below, and look for updates as we have word from the others.

Continue reading Toyota, Honda, Mazda and Nissan recall 3.4 million vehicles for faulty airbags

Toyota, Honda, Mazda and Nissan recall 3.4 million vehicles for faulty airbags originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 11 Apr 2013 09:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda3 successor due in dealers this fall

Published by Mazda Blogs on March 23rd, 2013

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2014 Mazda3 undergoing testing with camouflage on

Following exciting new models like the 2013 CX-5 and 2014 Mazda6, Mazda is getting ready to introduce the next generation of its high-volume compact, the Mazda3. After talking to several of Mazda’s dealers, Automotive News is reporting that the automaker is planning to introduce its new compact this fall, which is earlier than what was originally reported.

Aside from what we’ve seen in recent spy shots and what appeared to be a full-scale design mockup back in October, there is little information about the third-generation 3, but we can see that the car will get plenty of cues from Mazda’s stylish Kodo design language, and we expect even more technologies from the company’s SkyActiv efficiency program to come to bear. AN says that Mazda is hoping to top 300,000 sales this year in the US, and the sooner Mazda can replace the current aging 3, the better chances it has at reaching that goal.

Mazda3 successor due in dealers this fall originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 23 Mar 2013 09:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ford tumbles to second worst in Consumer Reports reliability survey, list dominated by Japanese [w/video]

Published by Mazda Blogs on October 29th, 2012

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It’s no secret that MyFord Touch has had its share of problems since being introduced, but the most recent reliability survey from Consumer Reports shows just how much this infotainment system has affected Ford. Just two years ago, the automaker was in the top 10 for the institute’s reliability rankings, but since then, it has tumbled to the second-lowest rung just above dead-last Jaguar. In addition to MyFord Touch, CR also attributes a handful of new products that have had issues right out of the gate.

Compiled from 1.2 million subscriber surveys, this year’s auto reliability survey heavily favors Japanese automakers, with eight of the 10 spots hailing from Japan. Toyota brands grabbed the top three spots (Scion, Toyota and Lexus – in that order) with Mazda, Subaru, Honda and Acura filling the next four spots. The only non-Asian automaker cracking the top 10 was Audi at number eight.

Audi climbed a total of 18 spots from last year, and Cadillac and GMC round out this year’s top gainers breaking into the top 15. Helping Cadillac’s upward movement, the CTS Coupe was named the most reliable domestic car. Lincoln, Volvo and Chrysler join Ford on this year’s biggest loser list.

Scroll down to watch a video and see where some of the other brands rank for reliability this year.

Continue reading Ford tumbles to second worst in Consumer Reports reliability survey, list dominated by Japanese [w/video]

Ford tumbles to second worst in Consumer Reports reliability survey, list dominated by Japanese [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 29 Oct 2012 15:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda ceases production in U.S. as last sedan rolls off line in Flat Rock

Published by Mazda Blogs on August 26th, 2012

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Mazda6 US production kickoff, 2008

The photo above was taken July 23, 2008 at the production kickoff for the Mazda6 at the AutoAlliance International plant, jointly owned by Mazda and Ford, in Flat Rock, Michigan. And as of this week, though neither company made a big deal about it, the AutoAlliance facility stopped building the Mazda6, ending Mazda production in the United States.

Although Ford takes total practical control of AutoAlliance International, the two companies will maintain their 50-50 stake in the plant for now while Ford invests $550 million in the facility to gear up for 2013 Fusion production.

The plant has built some well-known nameplates, including the Probe, Cougar and Mustang. The success of the joint venture led to the opening of an AutoAlliance Thailand plant in Rayong, modeled on its Flat Rock forebear. Mazda’s manufacturing departure from the U.S. will see 2014 Mazda6 production return to Japan; the automaker’s North American production relocates to Salamanca, Mexico in early 2013.

Mazda ceases production in U.S. as last sedan rolls off line in Flat Rock originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 26 Aug 2012 14:03:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online

Published by Mazda Blogs on August 2nd, 2012

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2013 Mazda6 production commencement ceremony

Mazda has officially kicked off production of the 2014 Mazda6 at its Hofu No. 2 plant in Japan’s Yamaguchi prefecture. The car in the photo above is a European-spec Mazda6 wagon, equipped with the automaker’s 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G gasoline inline-four, and it’s the first undisguised look we have at the rakish estate.

The 2014 Mazda6 will be seen for the first time at the Moscow Motor Show in August, and the rest of the world will get their first glimpse at market-specific models during September’s Paris Motor Show festivities. The third-generation Mazda6 will go on sale in Europe and Japan before the end of the year, while North American cars will start hitting dealerships sometime in early 2013.

Mazda plans to produce approximately 120,000 units of the Mazda6 annually at Hofu. 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of Mazda6 production there, with the original car (the official 626 replacement) first rolling off the line in 2002.

To review, Mazda will also offer the new mid-sizer with its Skyactiv-D diesel engine in other markets (and possibly the U.S.), and the car will be the first to use the automaker’s new i-ELOOP regenerative braking technology. We’ll have all the official details later this month.

Continue reading First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online

First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 02 Aug 2012 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda seen raising production of CX-5 as Skyactiv engine capacity doubled

Published by Mazda Blogs on July 3rd, 2012

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2013 Mazda CX-5 - silver, front three-quarter view

We’ve grown quite fond of Mazda’s new Skyactiv engine range, and apparently, we aren’t the only ones. High demand for these engines has caused Mazda to double its production of both the gasoline and diesel four-cylinder engines, and starting in October, the automaker will produce 800,000 of these efficient engines globally, up from 400,000.

In the United States, the 2.0-liter gasoline engine is the only Skyactiv unit currently available, found under the hood of the Mazda CX-5 (pictured) and select Mazda3 models. Elsewhere in the world, CX-5s can be had with a 2.2-liter Skyactiv-D turbodiesel engine, which we had a chance to test (and fall in love with) in Iceland. The automaker has confirmed that its next-generation Mazda6 sedan will be available with both of these four-cylinder engines, though it’s unclear if the diesel will be available Stateside. (Mazda has confirmed it will market an oilburner in the U.S. in the near-term, but it hasn’t revealed which vehicle will get it).

Part of the reason for this Skyactiv engine increase is the strong early demand globally for the new CX-5 crossover. Mazda will be upping production from 200,000 units annually to 240,000, all of which are built at the automaker’s Ujina, Japan facility. Because of strong demand since the crossover hit dealerships in February, Mazda has increased its global sales target from 160,000 units to 190,000.

Scroll down for the full press blast.

Continue reading Mazda seen raising production of CX-5 as Skyactiv engine capacity doubled

Mazda seen raising production of CX-5 as Skyactiv engine capacity doubled originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 03 Jul 2012 15:44:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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